Medicines and the NHS

​Many conditions which were previously debilitating or fatal can now be managed through the use of innovative medicines, and early diagnosis and treatment bring health benefits for both patients and the health service. Cost considerations are important, but in the end it should be health outcomes that drive the choice of treatments prescribed by physicians.

Pharmaceutical companies work with the NHS to ensure that local health priorities are met, patient outcomes are improved and that local NHS organisations can meet their objectives. Guided by appropriate governance, including the ABPI Code of Practice, these joint-working projects ensure a win: win: win for patients, the NHS and the industry.

The average NHS expenditure per person in the UK has increased dramatically over recent years, mostly due to increased labour costs and other related costs within the NHS. The number of prescriptions issued in the same time period saw an increase as well, and the money spent on medicines has increased, but remained relatively low. Compared to other daily household expenses, the money spent on medicines per person in the UK is again a very small amount.

In the following sections you can find more information about these topics:

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